Visit the secret garden of Capri, once a grand villa of the Swedish physician and author Axel Munthe.
This attraction is unforgettable, with the architecture, garden, and view blending together to make a truly picturesque location.
About Axel Munthe
“My home shall be open for the sun and the wind and the voices of the sea – like a Greek temple – and light, light, light everywhere!” This is a direct quote from Munthe, describing his beloved home of Villa San Michele. Munthe was born in 1857 and was best known for his book on ‘The Story of San Michele’. The book contained accounts of his experiences as a doctor in both Paris and Rome, as well as his semiretirement at the Villa San Michele. He also became the physician to the Swedish royal family, which he also detailed in his novel. The book gained immense popularity, with Munthe’s detailed description of his unusual life, personality and suffering was a fascinating read for many. Most particularly, his relationship with the Crown Princess Victoria was one of the main draws in the book, is not only her personal physician, but also a close friend and confidant.
About Villa San Michele
The Villa San Michele was built at the very end of the 19th century on the island of Capri. Munthe was in no way an architect prior to building the Villa, but it has been described by experts over the years as a work of architectural genius. He dedicated a large portion of his life constructing the villa and gardens surrounding it. When Munthe first began building his villa, Capri at the time was covered in crumbling ruins by the Emperor Tiberius’ many villas. Including many marble columns and statues buried beneath the dirt and grass. Instead of simply throwing these items away, Munthe decided to keep them. Resulting in any islander who accidentally found these artefacts, would head straight to Munthe’s door and deliver the goods. Where he would then add these marble and crumbling artefacts to his massive collection of Roman, Etruscan, and Egyptian artefacts he had accumulated over his years of travel and exploration.
The Villa remains one of the prettiest spots in all of Italy’s coastal region. Still featuring stunning views, manicured gardens, and historic artefacts. Undoubtedly one of the biggest works of art still remaining in this Villa, including sacred Medieval art, Tuscan fixtures from the 1700s, and a number of Roman marble statues. The surrounding gardens are lush and filled with blossoming flowers and growing vines, enchanting any visitor who strolls within the garden walking paths. However, the best feature of this Villa is the drop-dead gorgeous view, showcasing the entire island and the sapphire blue sea.